Banana 'Grand Nain' (Musa)

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Despite the plant’s tropical origins, few fruits are as omnipresent as bananas. While Musa acuminata is native to Southeast Asia, it’s known as one of the first domesticated plants. Today, bananas are a staple in every aspect of life, from wholesome diets to pop culture. That holds true for ‘Grand Nain’ (also spelled Grande Naine), which is sold by the bunch as ‘Chiquita’ bananas. This variety makes up half of the 100 billion bananas eaten every year worldwide. 

'Chiquita Banana' was trademarked in 1947 and Carmen Miranda—the banana-crowned lady on the blue produce stickers—became a household name. This representation of Miranda prevails as a stereotype today, but at the time it undoubtedly introduced people around the world to Brazilian music and Latin culture. 

Plant Type
Fruit Tree / Evergreen Perennial Herb

Did you know? The banana plant is actually an evergreen perennial herb, not a tree! The large ‘trunk’ is actually a pseudostem, which is made of bulky, leafy layers that emerge and wither over time. 

Harvest Season
Year-round

With good care, bananas will fruit within the first 15-18 months of planting. 

Mature Size
Really varies depending on variety. Some dwarf banana varieties grow only to 2-3 ft where other banana types reach up to 40 ft tall. Banana plants can be grown easily in containers and overwintered indoors if needed.

Banana plants are fast-growing, and prone to reproducing new plants through mini clones known as suckers.

Soil & Moisture
Rich, moist well-drained soil, nitrogen-rich soil, and humid conditions similar to their native areas tropical and subtropical regions. In well-drained soil, bananas can almost never get enough water, sunlight, and nutrients. 

Light Requirements
Full Sun, Part Shade

Self-Fertile
Yes

Growth Rate
Fast

Zone Hardiness
Outdoors 9-11 with frost protection; Patio/Greenhouse 4+

Benefits of Growing Banana Trees

The large ‘trunk’ is actually a pseudostem, which is made of bulky, leafy layers that emerge and wither over time.

According to the American Heart Association, one medium banana provides almost 9% of a person’s daily potassium needs.

Banana fruit is also rich in vitamin B6, vitamin C, potassium, dietary fiber and manganese.

See All Banana Varieties

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